breaking latest news – The adoption of controlled nutrition based on personalized programs and meals could lead to a savings of approximately US $ 13.6 billion each year.
This is the estimate made by scientists from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, who published an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association Network Open to describe the results of their work.
The team, led by Kurt Hager, assessed the economic return associated with the implementation of programs geared towards distribution of personalized meals for people with diseases and conditions that require special nutrition.
Medically tailored meals (Mtm), the authors explain, are healthy alternatives that comeor delivered directly to your home and can help improve the clinical condition of patients with diabetes, heart failure, kidney disease, HIV and cancer.
Programs in place currently generally deliver ten meals a week, five lunches and five dinners, to suitable patients. Experts developed models based on information gathered from a sample of adults with one or more food-sensitive diseases.
Over the past 20 years, it has been estimated that meals at home helped reduce annual health care costs by 19.7 percent and annual hospitalizations of 47 percent.
According to what emerges from the survey, therefore, the adoption of further strategies could prevent 1.6 million hospitalizations, which would translate into savings of 13.6 billion dollars every year, net of the cost of food.
Over a ten-year period, the researchers calculated a net savings of approximately $ 185.1 billion in healthcare and 18.3 million hospitalizations avoided.
“Currently – says Hager – the Mtm are not a benefit covered by insurance, therefore they are not available to many patients who would need them. For people with chronic illnesses and physical limitations who experience difficulty cooking on their own, this approach would represent a significant improvement in the quality of life ”.
Nutrition is not just for the purpose of preventing certain conditions – adds Dariush Mozaffarian, senior author and professor at Friedman – but it can be useful for treating people with debilitating conditions. The tailor-made meals would allow the start of a path oriented towards healing ”.
“Our results are very encouraging – concludes Hager – the possibility of saving money on the health sector, promoting strategies to improve patients’ conditions, is really important”.